Green Deen South Africa at the Living Faith Camp, Brits, 2015
– FH Ragie, 2015-12-17
Over the past weekend I was gifted the opportunity of mentoring youth at the Living Faith Camp that took place in Brits. These camps are hosted by the Living Faith Project (http://www.livingfaithproject.org/) and are aimed at reviving faith in the hearts and minds of younger Muslims by equipping them with the understanding of Islam. The camp makes use of mentorship models, workshops and fun activities that are all run on the clock of salaah in Jamaah (congregation), dhikr sessions and tasty meals. It was a space to learn, to form bonds of friendship, to be inspired, and to be at peace at being a Muslim – for both campers and mentors. Self-identity workshops, social activism sessions, eating watermelon, dhikr sessions, bonfire reflections, and hearing Athaan in the middle of the bush on a night hike, were just some of the activities at this camp that have left me humbled and energised.
I, on behalf of Green Deen South Africa, ran a session that encouraged the campers (and mentors) to get thinking green. The first part of the session was a drawing exercise. With a few clippings of branches, leaves and flowers, and some tree seeds and a few rocks, campers and mentors were asked to be observant of nature and Allah’s creations by drawing them. You would be surprised how crayons turn us all into excited kids!
The second part of the workshop consisted of brainstorming around the concept of Green Masaajid and Madressahs in South Africa. The groups of campers, who were already divided according to age and gender, were first asked to role play different people on their masaajid committees: Chairperson, Imam/Islamic Scholar, Teacher, Parent, Youth, Caretaker, Treasurer- Finance, Community member and Adviser. This was aimed at exposing them to the difficulties of decision making as well as making them aware on how they need to consider the viewpoints of everyone in their community. Each group was tasked with one of six themes: Water, Energy & Transport, Plants & Animals, Waste & Recycling, Decoration & Design, Tarbiyyah (Education) & Community Empowerment.
It really was an inspiring workshop. May Allah SWT bless both the mentors and campers for their enthusiasm for this rather difficult task. Their artwork was beautiful! Their team spirit was energizing! And their presentations were intelligent, creative and professional! I really would like to thank the camp organisers (who do this without receiveing any rumenration), the mentors and the campers. May Allah SWT bless you all and take you from strength to strength. May Allah SWT make the Living Faith Project continue growing so that it can serve our Muslim girls and boys in South Africa.
As one of the helping staff in the kitchen said – we came, we prayed (in Jamaah) and the rains came!
If you would like to:
- have a look at the Green Massajid workshop plan, please feel to drop us an email on firstname.lastname@example.org.
- learn more about the Living Faith project including their different sessions hosted by mentors, please drop them an email on email@example.com. Their camps consists of spiritual building (salaah, dhikr, quraan, reflections), practical education sessions (self-identity, arts, social activism, history) and fun and games.